Besides all of the amazing specialty dining opportunities the Anthem of the Seas offered, I wanted to review all of the other dining options that are offered at no additional cost (or a minimal charge) on the cruise. Of course, there is the Main Dining Rooms that offer excellent sit down meals, but there is much more to try.
For a much more scaled down breakfast or lunch buffet than offered at the Windjammer Marketplace, try the Solarium Bistro. It offers some healthier options in a smaller setting in the Solarium by the pools. They have salads, a few hot entrees and desserts.
For those passengers staying in a suite, you have the benefit of enjoying Coastal Kitchen. This is a private dining area exclusively for suite passengers and Pinnacle members. They offer delicious food that is a fusion of California and Mediterranean cuisine.
The first time we ate here, I had the eggs benedict, which was absolutely the best I have had. Normally on a cruise the main dining room offers a decent eggs benedict, the buffet usually has one that is barely passable, but Coastal Kitchen by far is the most incredible I have ever had! My wife enjoyed the French toast, which was thick, fluffy, and delicious. The next time we went to Coastal Kitchen it was for lunch. I started with the Mediterranean wedge salad. It was an iceberg wedge with crispy pancetta, gorgonzola cheese and sun-dried tomato vinaigrette. It was really good. Then, I had the grilled chicken sandwich. It was a really tender and juicy chicken breast with gouda cheese and a chipotle aioli. It was probably one of the best chicken sandwiches that I have ever had. My wife had the Penne Pasta Primavera. It was delicious and the pasta and vegetables were cooked to perfection.
There are several options for grab and go food on the ship. One of the most popular is Sorrento’s. Sorrento’s is an authentic New York style pizzeria. They are open from 11:30am until 3:00am and offer four different pizzas. The pepperoni and Pizza Margherita are served every day and there are two other flavors that are changed on a daily basis. An interesting fact, Pizza Margherita was named after the Queen of Italy, Margherita of Savory. It was made to have the colors of the Italian flag, tomatoes for red, mozzarella for white and basil for green. The pizza is pretty average, but if you a lucky enough to get a piece when they are fresh out of the oven, that improves it a little. They will also make you a custom pizza upon request.
The Café@270 is a great grab and go option that is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. We had lunch there and I enjoyed a tasty sandwich, which although pre-made, was heated up on a panini press when ordering. They also had soups, salads and desserts.
If you would like a pastry or cookie, you can swing by Café Promenade. They have fresh brewed coffee available for free.
While I was hanging out at the pool one day I was in the mood for a hot dog. I decided to go to the SeaPlex Dog House. They have a choice of hot dogs, brats, and sausages (both pork and chicken). You have your choice of several toppings. They have potato salad and coleslaw for sides if you would like. I was really happy that I chose the smoked bratwurst with sautéed onions and some mustard.
Another complementary option is room service. Although they do not charge for the food, they do add a $7.95 service fee per order, exceptfor the daily continental breakfast.
Other eateries that charge additional fees, but I would not consider a specialty restaurant, are La Patisserie and Johnny Rockets. At are La Patisserie they offer a variety of cupcakes, pastries, and other sweet treats for a la carte pricing. They also offer Starbucks premium coffees, which also come with a price.
For lunch one day our whole group of six decided to go to Johnny Rockets. I have had Johnny Rockets before, but never on cruise ship. I regret to say that this was the only meal I had that was beyond awful. I got a cheeseburger, which was dry and tasteless. The fries were cold, and shakes were just pretty boring. I’m not really sure if this is the norm for the onboard version of the restaurant, but I am not sure that I would want to try it again, especially because they had better food at the buffet for free.
If you like pubs, Anthem of the Seas has the Brass & Bock Pub located on deck 4. They have various appetizers and quick bites, as well as desserts for $4 and the Royal burger for $8. For the Bar Bites they have BBQ Pork Nachos, Lobster Mac & Cheese Wedges, Pub Pickles, Smoked Cheddar Ale Soup, German Soft Pretzel Sticks and Poutine. For desserts they offer, a Chocolate Bar with crispy rice, Fried Cheescake and Deep Fried Apple Pie.
Overall, the food was really good at the complimentary venues. I honestly feel that the price at the specialty restaurants is well worth it, but you can still eat really well if you would rather not spend the extra money.